Viasat shareholders approve Inmarsat acquisition

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TAMPA, Fla. — Viasat said June 21 that its shareholders voted to approve its $7.3 billion plan to acquire British satellite operator Inmarsat.

Richard Baldridge, CEO of U.S.-based Viasat, said the deal received “overwhelming support” from shareholders, putting the transaction on track to compete later this year following regulatory approvals.

Results from the shareholder meeting are due to be submitted to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in the coming days.

Buying private equity-backed Inmarsat would significantly expand Viasat’s broadband network globally in multiple orbits and spectrum bands.

The deal comprises $850 million in cash, about $3.1 billion in Viasat equity and the assumption of $3.4 billion of net debt.

The acquisition is subject to a long list of regulatory approvals on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, including new national security procedures in the United Kingdom.

In a letter filed to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission June 10, SpaceX claimed Viasat is unfit to take control of Inmarsat’s spectrum licenses because Viasat is allegedly violating its current frequency rights.

Viasat denies the accusation from SpaceX, which operates a competing satellite broadband network.

Viasat recently said revenues for the three months to the end of March increased 18% to $702 million, compared with the same period the year before.

The company posted a net loss of $29 million for the quarter, compared to a $7 million net income the prior year. Viasat blamed part of the loss on acquisition expenses.

Inmarsat said its revenues climbed 8% to $348 million for the first quarter of 2022.